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Margaret Dylan Jones
W.A. composer, pianist,
teacher, article writer
Theory At The Keyboard
Music theory has you bushed, does
Confused already about tones, semitones, scales &
be... COMPLETELY confused soon if you
get urgent help?
You've come to the right place. You've found a
gifted and qualified
teacher who is also a thoroughly-trained classical composer with quite
a bit of experience in non-classical music.
Even if you've never touched a piano or electric keyboard I will sit
you down in front of one at every lesson. If you don't already have
some keyboard ability I'll include a beginner's course in piano
playing, all integrated into the theory lessons.
It's so much easier to
understand harmony and many other aspects of theory if you're sitting
at a keyboard. Playing everything yourself makes it so much more
'alive' and real. You
really don't want to learn sitting at a desk with pen and paper.
While I'm on the subject of pens & paper, you can learn all about
scales, chords and harmony etc with notation, or without notation.
Develop your musical mind---for complete
I cover whatever you want, at your own pace, including:
- Note names, tones & semitones, tetrachords,
- Intervals (diads), triads, extended chords (e.g.
- Inversions of intervals, inversions of chords
- Use of chords, chordal progressions
- Modulations (key changes of various kinds)
- Musical form
- Melodic analysis (a speciality of mine)
- Time signatures, beats, rhythms, simple &
- Rhythm notation & rhythm learning systems
theory lessons are dry and boring. You don't
just want to know, you
want to UNDERSTAND. My students walk out the door with their 'Ah
ha!' moment still lifting them off the ground.
I love teaching theory and I love teaching
keyboard harmony and
keyboard skills. There was a period of many years when I didn't teach
theory in ongoing lessons, and didn't teach theory for written exams.
That's because the Australian Music
Examinations Board (AMEB) theory
syllabus was completely changed. But I'm kind-of over that now, even
though I don't like some aspects of the current syllabus.
Many years ago I was a theory exam marker for the AMEB, which gave me
invaluable insight into how the papers are marked. Quite iluminating!
In 2011 I attended a workshop in how to use the AMEB's new online
theory exams. It's a great idea. You pay the normal exam fee (same fee
as for a paper exam), and they give you login details for their
website. You can practice doing your exam as many times as you like
online, 24/7, for a whole year. Every time you hit the 'new' button the
system generates a completely new set of questions, and when you hit
the 'finish' button you get the answers back in milliseconds. When you
feel ready, you hit a different button to do your real exam. Again, you
get the result immediately.
However, if you want to learn just for fun that's great, too. Or if you
have another theory
teacher who is preparing you for an exam, please feel free to contact
me for extra
coaching. You should still continue to have your usual lessons with
your main teacher, but I can assist you with a completely different
approach that you will really enjoy.
So if you want to quickly get
an excellent understanding of all the
concepts of musical theory, from someone with deep insight into how it
all goes together to make music, give me a call.
Since May 2011 I've been living in the Perth hills, in the Shire of
Australia. Click on the links to learn
more or contact me by phone or email.
My mobile phone is 0414 374 701 (new in Sept 2010).
PeopleString. Try PeopleString.
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